Monday, 13 March 2017

darn cheap fabrics seasonal challenge - summer 16/17 made by rae gemma tank

summer in sydney has not been very pleasant this year, mostly either revoltingly hot or raining.  on the plus side i am very happy with my darn cheap fabrics seasonal challenge summer 16/17 make, a made by rae gemma tank.

this time lara and i chose the fabric using instagram.  when darn cheap posted a photo of embroidered cottons in 2 colourways, orange and red, i tagged lara and asked if she wanted to use the fabric for our challenge. we agreed to go with orange, which was actually a hard choice for me as i really liked them both.

i have been wanting to make a woven tank for some time and thought the fabric would be great for this purpose.

i was tossing up between the grainline willow tank and the made by rae gemma tank.  i like both styles for different reasons but in the end decided to go with the gemma tank for its shirtail hem and that it comes with front pattern pieces in 2 cup sizes A/B or C/D.

i made up the small size which pretty much correlates with my measurements and used the A/B cup size front piece.  the fit is fantastic and the bust darts are very well placed on me.

 i used a white cotton voile under the embroidered cotton as it is see through.  i tossed up whether to go for a loose lining free at the hem or to use the voile as an under lining.  i decided to go with the underlining and fasten the voile and embroidered cotton together at the hem and am happy with how this worked out.

the tank has very simple construction,but the instructions are clear and well laid out if you need them.  the instructions suggest making your own bias binding for the neck and arm holes, but i bought some pre-made cotton binding making this a very quick make.

unfortunately i only made this up late in summer so it hasn't had lots of wear yet, but it is very comfortable and would have come in very handy on those many 40+ days we had this summer.  i am keen to make up many more woven tanks next summer and even considering using silk, which i hardly ever sew with.  this pattern would be a great start to sewing with silk and doesn't take much fabric either keeping costs down.

i did get a chance to wear the tank out to some wineries on the bellarine peninsula for my sister's 40th birthday on the weekend.  the weather was great and this top is perfect for winery hopping on a sunny day.

as always i am very keen to check out lara's make, i am wondering if she has made a dress or a top? I'm guessing a dress, but you never know!

* Lara and I started the DCF Seasonal Challenge a year or two ago – we buy  a couple of metres of the same fabric from Darn Cheap Fabrics each season, and each make a garment.  We then reveal it on our blogs on the same day.  It’s just a fun thing that we started when we realised how often we buy and sew the same fabrics (often from Darn Cheap).


  1. It's great - you've handled the fabric beautifully!

  2. This is gorgeous Emma! I love that fabric and your tank looks like a really good fit. I really need to try and perfect the fit on a tank this summer. These little woven tanks are so useful!